Berhampur: With the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown preventing outdoor activities, the farming of paddy straw mushroom has gained popularity in Ganjam district.
Ganjam collector Vijay Amrit Kulange said the farming of the mushroom, which is a delicacy among Odisha households, was encouraged during the lockdown period and it has yielded satisfying results.
Since the paddy straw mushroom is grown in shade and its farming requires very less labour, the district administration decided to encourage it to keep the people engaged and earn during the pandemic period.
Claiming that Ganjam is the second highest mushroom producing district in the state, he said around 400 growers produce about eight tonne of mushroom daily. Paddy straw mushroom is the easiest crop and is ranked sixth in the world in terms of production.
Its farming can continue for at least 10 months in a year. Indoor farming of the mushroom has been initiated earlier successfully in the district, sources said.